Sunday, 02 July 2006 00:00

Like Father, Like Son: God’s Choice of You

Genesis 11:27-12:9 (KJV)

Now these are the generations of Terah: Terah begat Abram, Nahor, and Haran; and Haran begat Lot. And Haran died before his father Terah in the land of his nativity, in Ur of the Chaldees. And Abram and Nahor took them wives: the name of Abram's wife was Sarai; and the name of Nahor's wife, Milcah, the daughter of Haran, the father of Milcah, and the father of Iscah. But Sarai was barren; she had no child. And Terah took Abram his son, and Lot the son of Haran his son's son, and Sarai his daughter in law, his son Abram's wife; and they went forth with them from Ur of the Chaldees, to go into the land of Canaan; and they came unto Haran, and dwelt there. And the days of Terah were two hundred and five years: and Terah died in Haran. Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. So Abram departed, as the LORD had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran. And Abram took Sarai his wife, and Lot his brother's son, and all their substance that they had gathered, and the souls that they had gotten in Haran; and they went forth to go into the land of Canaan; and into the land of Canaan they came. And Abram passed through the land unto the place of Sichem, unto the plain of Moreh. And the Canaanite was then in the land. And the LORD appeared unto Abram, and said, Unto thy seed will I give this land: and there builded he an altar unto the LORD, who appeared unto him. And he removed from thence unto a mountain on the east of Bethel, and pitched his tent, having Bethel on the west, and Hai on the east: and there he builded an altar unto the LORD, and called upon the name of the LORD. And Abram journeyed, going on still toward the south.

The book of Genesis in its entirety is composed of 50 chapters. These 50 chapters can be divided into three basic sections. The first eleven, chapters we have already covered, are a compacted overview of history from Creation to the time of Abraham, who is the father of the people of Israel. The next major section, chapters 12-36, records the lives of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob—the patriarchs or founders of Israel. Chapters 36-50 tell the story of Joseph, the son of Jacob, who is a very beautiful Old Covenant type of Christ.

This morning we begin our study of the life of Abraham. The Apostle Paul makes an amazing statement—"Abraham is the father of all them that believe" (Romans 4:11). You have heard the saying, "Like father, like son." In Abraham we see a picture of ourselves. The problems he faced, the battles he fought, and the blessings he found are all ours too. The life of Abraham is the best Old Testament example of what it means to live by faith.

  1. Like Abrahahm, God chose you.
    Why did God choose Abram? Why not someone else from the Ur of the Chaldees? (Read Joshua 24:2-3). Abraham served other gods on the other side of the river (Ur). (Read Acts 7:2). The God of glory appeared to Abraham in Ur, while in idolatry! The point: God didn't owe Abraham anything; Abraham didn't deserve God's grace.
    1. God's choice of you is made in absolute freedom.
      God's choice of you is planned (Ephesians 1:4), but it is planned in absolute freedom.
    2. God's choice of you is made because of amazing grace.
      Abraham was an idolater, Israel was a lowly nation, David was a shepherd boy, Paul was a murderer—but all found God's grace. God rejects the self-righteous.
    3. God's choice is made for His glory.
      "We are saved for his name's sake" (I John 2:12). (Read I Corinthians 1:27-29).
  2. Like Abraham, God calls you.
    The choice of God is from eternity and a matter of the Divine, but the call of God is very human, very real, very personal. "Now the Lord said unto Abram" (v.1).
    1. It is a convicting call... the voice of God cannot be ignored. He is God.
    2. It is a challenging call... Abram left country, family, home and land.
    3. It is a compelling call... "So Abram departed" (v.4). The choice becomes a call.
  3. Like Abraham, God confirms you.
    When you begin the journey with God, He walks with you. He confirms every step. "There is one single fact that one may oppose to all the wit and argument of infidelity: namely, that no man ever repented of being a Christian on his deathbed" Hannah More. God made a covenant with Abram and promised him three incredible blessings:
    1. A personal blessing"I will bless thee and make thy name great."
    2. A national blessing"I will make of thee a great nation."
    3. A universal blessing"In thee all the families of the earth shall be blessed."

He "died in faith, not having received the promises" (Hebrews 11:13). It's coming.

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